How to Build Social Media Marketing Strategies for Small Businesses

About 73% of small businesses are already investing in social media marketing. Without the right social media marketing strategies, however, you’ll struggle. Your content strategy might not appeal to your target audience.

Instead, your competitors will reach these customers and draw them in.

Do you need help improving your social media marketing strategy? Here are the 13 tips you need for success. With these tips, you can use social media to benefit your entire digital marketing strategy.

Get ready to build brand awareness and generate fresh leads! Give your business the boost it needs with these 13 social media marketing tips today.

1. Know Your Goals

Don’t rush to start using social media marketing just yet! First, you’ll need to sit down and determine your SMART goals. These goals are:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Attainable
  • Results-Driven
  • Timely

SMART goals will help you stay on track with your social media and digital marketing strategy. Otherwise, one might not align with the other.

What do you hope to accomplish with your social media marketing strategies? How will it benefit your marketing strategy? How will social media benefit your business overall?

For example, maybe you want to use social media to:

  • Build brand awareness and recognition
  • Increase traffic to your website
  • Educate people about your product or service
  • Entertain customers with eye-catching content
  • Increase leads and conversions
  • Establish yourself as a thought leader in the industry
  • Build brand trust and loyalty
  • Establish your credibility and authority
  • Improve your ROI

Different marketing strategies can help you accomplish each of these goals. 

Your SMART goals might include “generating 25% more website traffic from social media by the end of the fourth quarter.” Once you establish your goals, set key performance indicators (KPIs) for each one. You can use your KPIs to track your progress.

For example, you can track website traffic, likes, comments, or followers.

Now that you know your goals, you can choose the right strategies to ensure success!

2. Understand Your Audience

There are now over 3.5 billion active social media users globally. Not everyone on social media fits your target audience, though.

If you want to reach your ideal customers, it helps to understand them. 

First, consider how people use social media. Understanding consumer behaviors can better inform your social media marketing strategies. For example:

  • Internet users spend 142 minutes per day using social media on average
  • About 2.1 billion people check Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, and/or WhatsApp daily
  • The average American has about 7.1 social media accounts
  • The average American Facebook user is 40.5 years old
  • Consumers watch about 85% of Facebook videos without sound
  • Over 500 million Instagrammers use Insta Stories each day
  • About 75% of people ages 18 to 24 use Instagram
  • About 57% of people ages 25 to 29 use Instagram
  • Over 50% of people ages 16 to 24 use Instagram
  • About 85% of millennials purchase products after watching a video about it
  • Over 70% of young adults ages 18 to 24 use Snapchat
  • Only 47% of people ages 25 to 29 use Snapchat

You can use these statistics to develop a social media strategy with your target audience in mind. For example, do you want to use younger consumers? Consider using Snapchat and Instagram.

If you want to reach older consumers, use Facebook and LinkedIn.

Are you interested in video marketing this year? Add a transcript to your videos. That way, people can watch without audio.

Buyer Personas

Before you start creating content, learn about your customers’ psychographics and demographics, too. Do you target a large audience? Segment your customers into distinct buyer personas.

You can separate customers based on:

  • Location
  • Education
  • Language
  • Age
  • Gender
  • Household income
  • Marital status
  • Pain points
  • Hobbies
  • Buying behaviors
  • Interests

Segmenting your audience will help you create content that appeals to each group. For example, a 15-year-old male likely has different priorities than a 40-year-old mother. If you don’t personalize your content, you’ll fail to connect with your audience.

3. Choose Your Platforms

Establish different SMART goals for each social media platform you plan to use. You don’t need to start by using seven different platforms. Instead, choose the social media platforms where your customers spend the bulk of their time.

What platforms are your competitors using? Are they drawing in an audience? If they’re failing to engage customers, there’s a chance they’re choosing the wrong platforms.

Learn from their mistakes. Remember to use your audience research to learn more about your customers. 

Once you choose your platforms, set a goal for each one. For example, you might choose to build brand awareness using Instagram or Facebook. You can establish yourself as a thought leader using LinkedIn and YouTube.

Choosing goals for each platform will help you utilize those platforms correctly. Otherwise, you’ll create content that fails to appeal to that audience.

For example, business professionals usually use LinkedIn. You can post informational, educational pieces to demonstrate your expertise.

TikTok, on the other hand, is better for fun, engaging video content.

Keep these social media platforms in mind as you build your social media marketing strategies.

4. Improve Your Profiles

Visit each of the social media platforms you plan on using. Have you created an account? Is your profile up-to-date?

Consumers will visit your profile to learn more about your business. Make it easier for them to find the information they’re looking for, including your:

  • Business name
  • Industry
  • Website
  • Phone number
  • Business hours

How should people reach you? Make sure your phone number or email address is accurate. Otherwise, you could struggle to draw in leads.

Do you have multiple business locations? Let people know. You can offer them ease and convenience once they realize you’re nearby.

Consider creating a subpage for each of your business locations on Facebook. Facebook even simplified the process for you. You can link these subpages to your main location.

Adding subpages can help you reshare content between each page. It can also help you promote specials for each location. Meanwhile, you can generate reviews for separate locations, too. 

5. Create Wow-Worthy Content

In order to attract, educate, and engage your target audience, you’ll need to produce wow-worthy content. Otherwise, your competitors might attract those customers instead.

Remember, you’ll want to create a social media marketing strategy with your target audience in mind. If you fail to personalize your content strategy, you might not appeal to your customers.

First, try to avoid too many promotional posts. Sales language could scare people away. It won’t help them learn about your brand, either.

Instead, tell a story. A story can help consumers connect with your brand on an emotional level.

Experiment with different forms of content, including photos, animations, infographics, and videos.

Consider using the Instagram Stories feature or Snapchat posts. These posts disappear within 24 hours. You can leverage the fear of missing out to draw people in.

Focus on generating brand awareness by maintaining brand consistency. If your brand is inconsistent, people might not recognize you.

Do you struggle to stay organized? Plan ahead. Create a content calendar and schedule your posts.

As you create content for your audience, watch your data. What posts appeal to their interests? You can use your data to make more informed decisions in the future.

Keep posting fresh content to maintain an active presence online.

Video Content

Video content is becoming increasingly popular, especially in light of COVID-19.

For example, about 96% of people watch explainer videos to learn more about products or services. Meanwhile, 80% of consumers say videos convince them to make a purchase. Videos on social media gain 1,200% more shares than text and images.

The live streaming industry has grown by 99% between April 2019 and April 2020, too. By April 2020, people watched nearly 4,000 billion hours worth of live stream content.

In fact, 80% of consumers would rather watch a live video than read a blog.

If you’re trying to reach younger consumers, go live! About 63% of people ages 18 to 34 watch live streaming content regularly. Live streaming accounted for 82% of all web traffic in 2020.

6. Consider Your Timing

Once you start posting on social media, check your analytics. When do you generate the most engagement on each social media platform? Look at the day and time.

Use your data to plan your future posts.

You might find different buyer personas are online at different times. For example, busy moms are likely online while their kids are at home (or asleep). If you’re targeting teenagers, post when they’re out of school.

Perfecting your timing can help you boost engagement.

7. Engage With Incentives

Are you still struggling to generate engagement online? Consider posting deals, incentives, and contests. You can use these social media marketing strategies to stand apart from your competitors.

Consumers look for brands that can benefit their daily life. By posting incentives, you won’t focus on sales. Instead, you can draw people in with freebies!

Post a contest on your social media accounts. Encourage people to tag their friends in the comments to draw more people in. Then, raffle a prize, such as a t-shirt or a coupon.

Consider prizes that will encourage consumers to participate. In addition to branded items, you can also give them freebies or discount codes.

Give your social media followers exclusive deals, too. They’ll keep returning to your social media account, knowing they can’t find those deals anywhere else.

You can even incentivize people who visit your shop. Encourage people to check in using Swarm or Facebook. Then, offer freebies or discounts to the people who check in.

Their friends will see they’re at your store, which can help you build brand awareness.

8. Try PPC Advertising

Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising allows businesses to display ads on search engines or social media. You can create PPC ads on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and other platforms. 

Give PPC advertising a try! You can create eye-catching ads to draw people to your website. Then, you can convert those visitors into paying customers.

Consider using sponsored ads as well. Sponsored ads blend among organic posts. Consumers won’t feel like you’re forcing sales language on them.

Create different ad campaigns for each buyer persona. Use images and language that appeal to that group’s wants and needs. Then, use a strong call to action to compel them to take action.

Experiment with different ad formats, including Stories and Story Canvas Posts.

Try location-based ads, too. These ads appear to locals based on a target radius. You can draw nearby consumers into your store.

9. Remain Honest and Authentic

Consumers are concerned about honesty and authenticity now more than ever. You can use your social media posts to remain transparent with customers.

For example, consider posting behind-the-scenes content. Share insider information to make people more comfortable about your business.

Don’t neglect inclusivity, too. People want to know you care about them. If you’re excluding customers, they’ll turn to your competitors instead.

10. Post UGC

If you’re struggling to demonstrate authenticity, consider posting content created by your happy customers.

Consumers are 2.4 times more likely to view user-generated content (UGC) as authentic compared to brand-created content. UGC will show on-the-fence customers that people already love and trust your brand. 

About 92% of consumers trust recommendations from people they know. Another 70% trust online consumer opinions. By posting UGC, you can leverage that trust.

Add a branded hashtag to your social media marketing strategy, too. Consumers can use that hashtag when they post about your business. You’ll have an easier time finding UGC as a result.

11. Show Interest in Influencers

About 90% of marketers believe influencer marketing can benefit their digital marketing strategy. In fact, 42% consider influencer marketing their top ROI-generating marketing strategy.

During the COVID-19 crisis, influencer marketing campaigns:

  • Helped generate a positive brand image
  • Drove online sales
  • Helped businesses reach new audiences

Who do your customers already know and trust? Consider working with an influencer within your industry. Then, leverage that influencer’s existing brand trust to build trust with your brand.

12. Keep Up With Trends

Social media marketing trends pop up constantly. If you want to remain relevant with your target audience, keep up with the trends.

For example, the Mannequin Challenge was popular a few years ago. Today, more businesses are using branded TikTok filters and AR/VR.

Keeping up with trends will show consumers you’re not falling behind the times.

13. Analysis and Adapt

As you use these social media marketing strategies, review your progress. Are you meeting your goals? Check your KPIs.

Use your data to adjust your strategy. Then, optimize to improve your ROI!

Staying Social: 13 Social Media Marketing Strategies for Success in 2021

Don’t fall behind the times this year. Instead, use these 13 social media marketing strategies for sweet success. With these tips, you can generate brand awareness, leads, and sales!

Need help improving your social media marketing strategy? We have the tools you need.

Contact us today to discover how we can skyrocket your business!

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